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Membership FAQs

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FAQs

Membership Information

How do I join NRF?

To learn more about becoming a member, visit our membership section or contact our membership team.

How do I find out if my company is already a member?

When you sign up for a free MyNRF account, you can search for your company. We’ll let you know if you’re a member.

What is the difference between Retail membership and Associate membership?

Retail and Associate are “types” of membership and not “levels.” Your membership type is determined by the nature of your primary business, and could be one of the following:

  • Companies that primarily sell products to consumers – specialty retailers, grocers, department stores, chain restaurants – are classified as Retail Members.
  • Retail companies operating in one of these participating states are eligible for free NRF membership as part of a dual membership program with NRF's State Leadership Group.  Companies must be single state operators.
  • Companies that provide solutions to retailers and/or sell products business-to-business – including equipment manufacturers, software developers, consultants, wholesalers, financial institutions, media agencies and internet service providers – are classified as Associate Members.
  • Accredited public or private colleges, universities, or online learning institutions offering degree programs at the bachelor level or higher are classified as University Members.
  • Students at NRF University Member schools qualify for NRF Student Association membership.
  • Any national retail association that primarily represents members in the grocery, pharmacy and/or general merchandise retail sectors is eligible to join FIRAE, the Forum for International Retail Association Executives.

Each type of membership has its own schedule of membership dues and benefits. The type of membership is determined by NRF staff at the time a company joins.

Does NRF retail membership include Shop.org and ARTS?

Yes, NRF’s new unified retail membership structure offers more relevant, impactful and valuable services to all of NRF’s members.  Retail members will have direct access to the most important NRF initiatives and programs, including:

  • Shop.org events, research and exclusive offerings;
  • ARTS white papers, research and standards;
  • More than 50 committees and councils, including the Talent Acquisition Group (TAG), the Retail Communicators Network and the Data Security Council;
  • Substantial discounts to our signature events, NRF’s Big Show, Shop.org Digital Summit, and NRF Protect;
  • Free postings on our job board to attract new retail talent.

Would NRF consider me a “retailer”?

NRF defines a retailer as a company whose core business is to sell consumer goods directly to the end consumer via storefront, catalog, television or online. Chain restaurants are included in this definition. The company must own the merchandise it sells. Companies primarily engaged in the sale of goods or services to businesses (whether at wholesale or retail) are not considered retailers.

If any of the following statements apply, NRF defines your company as a non-retailer:

  • Your company has not yet launched, there are no stores, you do not have a website, and there is no way to verify your retailer status.
  • Your company does not sell merchandise to consumers.
  • Your company manufactures consumer goods that can only be purchased through third-party distribution partners (excluding franchisees); there is no way for a consumer to purchase directly from your company.
  • Your company primarily sells business-to-business or wholesale. While an individual consumer could purchase a product from you directly, most of your customers are businesses. Example: A company that sells cash registers primarily sells them to businesses.
  • Your company runs a website, provides an ecommerce platform, and/or processes transactions on behalf of a retailer as a third-party. Example: ABC Company runs the website for XYZ Retailer but its staff is employed by ABC Company. ABC is the vendor and XYZ is the Retailer.
  • Your company aggregates and sells/auctions merchandise that is owned by other companies and/or you provide a service by which retailers’ products are promoted and sold through your website.
  • The messaging on your parent company’s website primarily discusses things such as “solutions,” “services,” “apps,” “partners,” and/or “clients” and gives no indication of, or links to, any subsidiary retail companies.
  • Your company’s primary purpose is to produce, manage, promote, or distribute “apps” (mobile applications) to do such things as: a) help consumers locate "deals" on merchandise not owned by your company; b) locate retail companies in a geographic region, c:) generate coupons or discount codes for a company not your own, d:) allow consumers to bid on products not owned by your company.

My company is a member of NRF. Does that mean all employees have access to member benefits?

Yes, membership is companywide and all of your colleagues are entitled to access benefits.  Encourage your colleagues to create their own MyNRF accounts so they can access member-only resources and subscribe to publications.

Who handles NRF membership at my company?

Your company designates who will be the voting member (principal contact) for the membership. NRF recommends that each member also designate at least one secondary contact. Contact our membership team to find out the name of your company’s voting member.  

What is a “voting member?”

NRF membership is company-wide and a “voting member” is the individual designated by the member company to serve as the principal contact for NRF membership. This individual is typically responsible for ensuring his/her colleagues are aware of the company’s NRF membership, receives all member-related communications and is the one contacted to confirm membership renewals. This individual is called the “voting member” because he/she would provide the vote, on behalf of the member company, for any proposed amendment to NRF’s bylaws. 

Does NRF sell mailing lists of its members? Where can I see which companies are members?

NRF respects the privacy of its members and does not sell, rent or make publicly available its membership list. Members have access to the searchable online Membership Directory where they can locate other member companies.  While general company contact information is available, no individual contact information is included in the directory. 

If you’re interested in obtaining retail directories (organized alphabetically and by state), which also include information on wholesalers and distributors as well, contact Chain Store Guide Information Services at (800) 778-9794 or visit your local public library.

Your Profile and Contact Information

How do I update my profile and contact information? How do I change my password?

To manage your profile, sign in to your MyNRF account. If you don’t have an account, you can create one for free.

How do I update my company’s information?

If you’re the designated voting member (principal contact), secondary contact, or invoice contact for your company, you can renew your membership online and update your company’s member profile by logging into your MyNRF account or by contacting Michael Hornbuckle.

Committees

Do I have to pay to join a committee? How do I learn more or join a committee?

NRF has more than 50 committees, councils, and task forces. These groups offer opportunities for members to network, share ideas, establish best practices, prepare testimony for Congress and grow as professionals.

Generally speaking, committees are either policy-focused or operations-focused. Each committee establishes its own charter, has an elected chairman (from an NRF member company) and has a designated NRF Committee Staff Liaison. Participation is complimentary for NRF Retail Members.

View committee details, which include contact information. Our staff liaisons can answer your questions about joining committees.